Grand Canyon National Park
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Plan Your Trip to Grand Canyon National Park: Best of Grand Canyon National Park Tourism

Explore Grand Canyon National Park

It’s best known for legendary views, full stop, but the Grand Canyon is more than just a photo op—there’s so much to do and see. Some visitors drive or cycle the canyon’s edge, but if hiking’s more your thing, you can take on one of its well-maintained trails like Bright Angel (good for all levels) and South Kaibab (a steeper route, for experienced hikers). Of course, wildlife’s a main draw—you’ll see everything from mountain lions and desert bighorn sheep to over 400 types of birds. But there’s also the greenery: The Grand Canyon has a dozen plants you can’t find anywhere else. We suggest going in September or October—and avoid summer—to skip big crowds but still enjoy relatively warm weather. Most would say the South Rim offers the most classic experience—the views you come to expect, and the most to do for visitors looking to spend a full day or more.

Essential Grand Canyon National Park

How to do the Grand Canyon in 2 days

All the panoramas from lesser-known trail
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Itineraries from real travellers

Grand Canyon with a kid in tow

With its epic hiking trails, sheer rock-climbing cliffs, and whitewater rapids, the Grand Canyon is catnip for adrenaline junkies. But Arizona’s most visited national park is also great for families—even toddlers, as I discovered on a recent trip. With some expert guidance (and plenty of snacks) it’s possible to plan a memorable trip to the Grand Canyon with children in tow. Here’s how.
Lindsay Cohn, New York City, NY
  • Rim Trail
    Looking for a gentle way to explore the canyon and share the jaw-dropping views with the little ones? With its level, paved paths, the Rim Trail is an easy hike for children who want to take things at their own pace. And if fatigue or hunger sets in, you can stop and take a snack break (or a nap) on the rocks.
  • Bright Angel Bicycles and Cafe
    Most little children aren’t ready to pedal solo. But that shouldn’t keep you from cruising along the easy-to-navigate South Rim Trail or riding into Grand Canyon Village to see the landmark buildings and ogle the train. Bright Angel rents out tot-approved trailers plus tag-alongs that are great for ages 5 to 7.
  • Grand Canyon Helicopter 45-Minute Flight with Optional Hummer Tour
    One of the best ways for families to take in the vast canyon is on a helicopter ride. It’s perfect for any age, and during the 45-minute flight you’ll swoop over the Dragon Corridor and Imperial Point and make your way along the North and East rims. It’s definitely a holiday highlight.
  • Grand Canyon Lodge Dining Room
    There aren’t many restaurants within the Grand Canyon National Park itself. If you prefer not to drive outside the park (and as the parent of a toddler, I get it), head to Grand Canyon Lodge Dining Room. You can fuel up for the day with pancakes, grab a post-nap sandwich, or cap things off with a hearty steak for the grown-ups and nuggets for the children. But note—bookings are essential, especially during peak season.
  • El Tovar Hotel
    This historic 1905 hotel right in the park has hosted legends like Theodore Roosevelt, Albert Einstein, and Oprah Winfrey. It’s also fab for families, thanks to its comfy rooms and an onsite restaurant that is clutch when the idea of driving somewhere else might mean a meltdown.